"So prayer is our sometimes real selves trying to communicate with the Real, with Truth, with the Light. It is us reaching out to be heard, hoping to be found by a light and warmth in the world, instead of darkness and cold. Even mushrooms respond to light - I suppose they blink their mushroomy eyes, like the rest of us." ~Anne Lamott~ (Help, Thanks, Wow: The Three Essential Prayers)
Those were the Prospectors last words a week ago, as I drove off to see my family."Did you take the phone, your camera charger, your medicine and your toothbrush?"
"Yes." I answered. I had enough "stuff" to stay for a month. He was still waving as I drove down the dusty road.
I drove to South Sacramento first and got four Cortizone shots, at the hospital, in my feet. My poor feet were aching , tingling and overdue for my twice a year injections for multiple Neuromas... the awful afflection that numbs and cause pain at the same time. The doctor says that an operation is coming, in the near future, to remove the thick nerve tissue that has developed in both feet. Bummer!! It from all those years of working for a living.
I headed down the highway and through the Delta, stopping for some fruit and vegetables at the Delta Farmers Market on Highway 12, just before the Rio Vista bridge.
You can read about all of the good things that The Delta Foundation is doing for the Delta if you're interested. It's a good non profit organization that has membership with benefits.
The California Delta is a beautiful resource that is worthy of being taken care of. It's one of California's geographic wonders. Take a look at the links.
I turned south and drove along the Sacramento River on highway 160 and, of course, got stuck waiting for the bridge linking Brannan Island and Sherman Island because it is just what happens out there.
The traffic stops for all the boats going under the bridges. You wait, get out, stretch. TAKE PICTURES and relax because there's nothing you can do about it. It's a water world out there and bridges are the only way to get from one place to another. If a bridge is up, then you wait. It's a time honored Delta tradition.
The bridge went back down and I continued on. I drove over the San Joaquin River and into Antioch, through Pittsburg, Concord, Pleasant Hill, Walnut Creek... and finally got to my sister's in Lafayette.
My lovely upstairs "room with a view" was ready... with flowers.
My sis always does some little "extra", like flowers and... see the black clock? She found two little Corgi statues and put them they to remind me of Carl and Cutter while I was away from them. That was very sweet.
I needed a nap. She left me to veg for a few hours and later she fed me. This is my home away from home when I come down here. I'm so lucky.
The next morning I sat with Sis and the dogs, drank some really good coffee, and planned the day.
Later I went to visit my grandkids and their Mom. She needed to get some work done so I took them to the park.
Oh, the wonderful Pleasant Hill Park and pool...
This is where I learned to swim and hang out with friends... and yes, if we're being honest, met boys every summer. This little brick building was the first building here. Now they are building another one to the right that will be a swimming and teen center.
The park is beautiful.
The Beans love to play here. There are lots of ways to swing, climb, slide and tumble. They always move at the speed of light.
Climbing high and yelling, "Hey Noni, WATCH ME." and I do... like a hawk, following them, worrying, telling them to stay in my line of sight. Telling them to smile for me, as I take pictures of them.
They know that Noni "Takes pictures of their LIFE." and they are so good about it... most of the time.
Angry Bird, sittin' in the tunnel, is five and trying, very hard, to keep the tongue in the mouth. It's always getting out.
They really like to climb. It must be a throwback to our "monkey" connection. Darwin would be proud.
Here is the "hanging monkey" move.
And this is the half hanging monkey.
And my most favorite,
The "Oh, my gosh. What do I do now." move.
You just have to love that flexibility and form.
Later they found a small shovel that someone left in the sand. But there was no pail for them to put the sand in. So, being the amazing and creative Bambinos that they are, they improvised.
Laughing themselves silly about having "fat" stomachs and looking like they were "going to have a baby".
Before we left they climbed into a big old tree and I took... "More pictures, Noni?"
"Yes dears, just one more...please."
and they let me indulge my passion...one more time.
And... once more.
There's that tongue again. It's uncontrollable!
Tomorrow would be the FIRST DAY OF SCHOOL for them. Angry Bird would be starting Kindergarten and my California Bean would start second grade. Wow! Growing at the speed of light.